In June of this year we were looking forward to a nice afternoon out of the office at Network Louth’s Awards ceremony – We were up for Best Emerging Business but to be perfectly honest we never in a million years believed we stood a chance of winning. There was so many fantastic businesses up for the award, we just went along for an excuse to get out of the office and enjoy a fabulous meal in the luxurious surroundings of Scholars Townhouse Hotel in our home town of Drogheda. But as the results were about to be announced the nerves set in despite not believing we stood a chance it was hard not to get swept up in the excitement. Then to our utter shock we were announced as the winners!! I am very rarely lost for words but I was that afternoon, unlike Sharon who found her voice and was whooping and cheering as loud as she could.
Fast forward to last week Friday 6th October and we were representing Louth in the national finals of the Network Ireland award. Our category Best Emerging Business was the largest category and had the biggest number of applicants. So even being there to represent our county was a huge honour. The day of the Gala Ball we spent listening to inspirational speakers at Network Irelands Annual conference – we attended workshops and learnt a lot! We enjoyed the amazing surroundings and met lots of other business women at different stage of their business lives. It was easy to put to the back of our minds why we were there until it was time to head up to our room and put on the glad rags – suddenly the nerves kicked in again! Network Louth have had some amazing results the last couple of years and with the ladies alongside supporting us it was hard not to feel little bit of pressure and we hoped we didn’t disappoint (despite them all telling us we never could!)
Eventually it was our category (we were second from last!) and finally at almost 11.30pm they were ready to announce the winner – A sudden calm descended upon myself & Sharon as we sat waiting the results, holding hands knowing that regardless of the result we were so proud to be sitting in them chairs representing Count Her In, representing our 17,000 members and representing our County.
It’s hard to build excitement in blog with the title “We Won” but…….. drum roll please…. We Won! We ACTUALLY Won!!! This time around there was no whooping, or cheering instead myself and Sharon just hugged each other & the room seemed to fall silent! There was just us! Me and Sharon 2 women who up until just over 12 months ago had never met.
2 women who struggle with juggling a business, and families.
2 women who want so much but are not always sure how to get there.
2 women who sometimes feel they don’t belong in the world of business.
2 women who love their job on the good days, and really struggle on the tough days.
2 women who support each other but are not always kind to themselves.
2 women who have days they feel they can take on the world, and other days wonder how they will put one foot in front of each other.
And now here we were up on stage collecting an award that said we were Network Ireland’s Best Emerging Business –Recognition that we are on the right track, we are doing OK and we should be so proud! Not just proud of each other, proud of OURSELVES!!
Now we can’t go into too much detail about what happened after our name was called – What happens in Druids Glen stays in Druids Glen but let’s just say we celebrated and we are possibly still recovering 5 days later!
Of course we couldn’t talk about Awards without a little Thank You Speech…
We would like to thank Network Louth and each of the fantastic business women who not only supported us but inspire us.
We would like to thank the Network Ireland team for an amazing day & night, and thank the judges for believing in us and Count Her In.
We would like to thank our family and friends for all the messages of support (before and after the event!)
We would like to thank Team Count Her In – Aisling in the office and the other 17,000+ Women across Ireland, the UK and the US who keep us going on the tough days!
And finally, we would like to thank 8 amazing people who put up with us day in and day out! Our husbands John and Brian and our babies Keelan & Finn, Ava Rose & Molly, Rían & Caoimhe xx